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Old February 16, 2011, 10:09 AM   #51
geetarman
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I think if that situation had played out for me, I would not be the first one out of the car. I would have driven off and called 911. If the other driver pursued me after that, I would prepare for the worst.

If you have a chance to defuse the situation and don't, I would not think the court would smile at you.

Either way, a life is lost and another life pretty much hosed.

Not good.

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Old February 16, 2011, 10:19 AM   #52
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I don't know, I see things a little different than most posters. From the meager info we have- and it is really meager- I think the whole stupid string of incidents would have come to nothing tragic if the 21 YO had not brandished the gun.

With that, I am not taking away any of the 40 YO's stupidity and provoking. But it was the 21 YO who unnecessarily escalated things to guns.

I think the defendant's lawyers will claim he acted in self defense both in the ramming of the mustang and in the shooting, as he was panic-stricken by the sight of the gun. And long shot as it is, they might get away with it.
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Old February 16, 2011, 10:32 AM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by micromontenegro
I think the defendant's lawyers will claim he acted in self defense both in the ramming of the mustang and in the shooting, as he was panic-stricken by the sight of the gun. And long shot as it is, they might get away with it.

I'm sure the lawyers will try something like that but if the facts come out to be even REMOTELY close to what we have so far that will never fly.

There is no way that ramming a vehicle that is behind you at a light, stationary, with all associated persons inside is self defense unless their actually SHOOTING at you.


The descriptions of the 21yr old by his own family is quite telling.... "fearless and lived on the edge". What kind of person does that bring to mind? My opinion, that's the loving family's way of saying he never backed down and was aggressive and adversarial.... because that's the typical behavior of people I've known that have been described that way.

I suspect that descriptions of the shooter would be similar. Hot head meets hot head. One ends up dead.

Don't be a hot head. Don't hang out with people who are hotheads.
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Old February 16, 2011, 10:41 AM   #54
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Good advice about the hotheads. Sometimes though, you do not realize who the hothead is.

Case in point, the band I am in was playing one Sunday in church, and one of the parishioners went to take communion. He printed and the bass player saw it.

After that service, he came up to me and asked what I thought about someone carrying in church. He was HOT!

I explained to him that the person in question, is a serving deputy sheriff.

He came to church from work and did not have a large enough shirt to adequately shield the weapon.

Just like a faucet, the anger was turned off. I have NEVER seen a person get so angry, so fast in my life. Those kinds of folks are all around us and you just don't know who they are. What is worse, you do not know what will set them off.

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Old February 16, 2011, 10:50 AM   #55
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Read the articles if you're going to comment. The OP's account is a little confused.

I don't see a legitimate basis to the SD claim by the shooter. This seems like a straight-up murder. The fact that the victim had brandished a firearm before disengaging the initial encounter doesn't allow the perpetrator to then pursue and trap the victim in order shoot him in the head, in the course of 'self defense'. It not even apparent that the victim had his gun in hand when exiting his vehicle the second time. I'm guessing that the initial brandishing incident is what has muddied the waters, enabling an SD claim.
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Old February 16, 2011, 10:55 AM   #56
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I don't know, I see things a little different than most posters. From the meager info we have- and it is really meager- I think the whole stupid string of incidents would have come to nothing tragic if the 21 YO had not brandished the gun.

With that, I am not taking away any of the 40 YO's stupidity and provoking. But it was the 21 YO who unnecessarily escalated things to guns.

I think the defendant's lawyers will claim he acted in self defense both in the ramming of the mustang and in the shooting, as he was panic-stricken by the sight of the gun. And long shot as it is, they might get away with it.
I don't disagree. I think the truck driver was stupid for getting out and yelling at at the guy in the mustang, but the 21 year old seems to have completely overreacted by getting out and threatening the guy with a gun. He wasn't being shot at, he was being yelled at, and he should have stayed in the car and called 911.

As for whether the 40 year old gets away with it, I suspect it will depend what the situation looks like when all the facts are known. For instance, was truck blocked in by traffic? How did he appear react to having a gun pointed at him? Did it enrage him further or did he appear to be afraid for his life?
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Old February 16, 2011, 10:57 AM   #57
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Originally Posted by geetarman
Good advice about the hotheads. Sometimes though, you do not realize who the hothead is.
This is true... they will eventually show their true colors though. It's not so much an "angry" thing, it's hot headed ACTION you need to avoid.

The guy that was upset about the gun in church. I can understand the anger, but if he had gone over and got "all up in his face", I'd be worried. Those are the people I avoid.

If you can't express anger without vitriol and aggression, I don't want to be around you.

If you can't walk (or drive) away from people who have anger problems and instead allow yourself to be drawn in, I don't want to be around you.

PARTICULARLY, if you are any of those things and think you should carry a gun, I DEFINITELY don't want to be ANYWHERE around you.
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Old February 16, 2011, 10:58 AM   #58
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Too much testosterone and not enough common sense.

If each had taken a step back, it would not have happened.

I am on the lookout for aggressive drivers all the time. I let them pass.

Much better for them to be in front than behind.

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Old February 16, 2011, 11:34 AM   #59
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According to this online report, the Abilene Police department's incident report lists the charge as "First Degree Murder."

The above link also contains several links to additional stories about the shooting. Based on a short read, the shooting appears to be just as senseless and pointless as the initial story makes it sound. From the comments, it sounds like the police chief is caught between the local news and a prominent local family and decided to punt to the Grand Jury.

According to the victim's girlfriend, after the shooting Driver A ""looked at me and told me, 'Next time, learn not to pull a gun on someone' and smiled,"

I'm waiting to see what kind of case his lawyer puts up; but I'd expect the Grand Jury to return an indictment on this one.

Also appears that Driver A may have a criminal history after all - the truck is registered to a man named Christopher North, 44yrs old. Police have not confirmed if this is the same man who was driving the truck; but North has a history of drunken driving arrests (has interlock device installed) and was arrested (subsequently no-billed by the grand jury) for aggravated assault in Kaufman County in 2007.

Last edited by Bartholomew Roberts; February 16, 2011 at 11:41 AM.
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Old February 16, 2011, 11:50 AM   #60
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According to this online report, the Abilene Police department's incident report lists the charge as "First Degree Murder."
+1 on that
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Old February 16, 2011, 01:40 PM   #61
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They police classify reports according to policy or in the absence of policy, the officer's opinion. The classification of the report will have zero effect on what, if any, charge is filed.
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Old February 16, 2011, 04:04 PM   #62
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Thanks for bringing up this incident. I used to be the guy who hops out of the vehicle to "make" things right. Making things right in my own mind anyway. 20 years later I know better but it is good to have a reminder every now and then.

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Old February 16, 2011, 10:32 PM   #63
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Perhaps I should have said "most of the time" rather than "anytime". Most of the time, staying in your car is going to be the right tactical move.
Oh, I agree with that as far as road rage or anything like that goes. I was only talking abut during an actual shooting. In road rage, best to jsut keep driving and in an opposite direction from the other guy.

All the best,
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Old February 17, 2011, 09:02 AM   #64
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Oh, I agree with that as far as road rage or anything like that goes. I was only talking abut during an actual shooting. In road rage, best to jsut keep driving and in an opposite direction from the other guy.
I admit, your comment made me think - "what is the best thing to do if 2-3 armed and experienced thugs are able to box your car in in a bad part of town"? Do you get out? If you do, what cover is available? I'm not quite sure what I'd do - I'd still be inclined to stay in my car, though I don't know if this is the best reaction. Depends on the circumstances, I suppose.
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Old February 17, 2011, 09:14 AM   #65
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The only military training I've had...

... with regard to vehicular incidents...

... has assumed vehicles disabled by IED.

In both the courses I attended, though, getting out of a disabled vehicle was considered critical.

Are there any instructors out there who actually advocate staying in a boxed-in or disabled vehicle, if shooting seems at all likely?
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Old February 17, 2011, 01:29 PM   #66
Willie Lowman
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Driver A exits his truck and as Driver B exits his vehicle, Driver A shoots him in the head killing him.
Quote:
both drivers claim self-defense

Does not compute... How can someone claim self defense if they have been shot in the head and are now deceased?
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Old February 17, 2011, 02:53 PM   #67
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Does not compute... How can someone claim self defense if they have been shot in the head and are now deceased?
Exactly what I thought...
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Old February 17, 2011, 03:34 PM   #68
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In both the courses I attended, though, getting out of a disabled vehicle was considered critical.
Is the reason the limitation of movement and the possible need to engage people at bad angles from your seat?
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Old February 17, 2011, 08:27 PM   #69
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TailGator...

... those are two good reasons, yes. It's hard to engage effectively from inside a vehicle.

A third reason is that you are a relatively stationary target, in a box of unarmored metal and glass. Most handgun rounds considered suitable for defense will have little trouble getting through a car door or side window. If the vehicle isn't moving, the driver's position is very vulnerable.

If the vehicle can move, then it's a good idea to get it out of the threat zone.

I don't know if the Mustang was effectively pinned in. If it was, then getting out of the car may have been a reasonable response. If it wasn't, the 21yo should have used its agility to get out of the area.

But from the way things read, the 40yo in the truck initiated hostilities, and then chose to re-engage. If so, then he deserves any and all charges leveled.
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Old February 17, 2011, 11:19 PM   #70
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Someone brandishes a gun at you during a road rage incident, then gets back in his car, so you get back into your truck. So now you know someone has a gun, and you have just escaped a nearly lethal incident, the threat has ended. But whats the next best move in a road rage incident when you know your aggressor has a gun?
I'd get on the horn, dial police and say "A guy just pulled a gun on me. He's in a <enter vehicle>, license #whatever, going south on.....etc."

Sheesh, what a couple boneheads!

Just spent the last 2 weeks at my northern property. Almost heaven, even though the driving is far longer for everything. Nice when the only thing that comes close to ticking you off, is a slow truck. Even that doesn't bother me though, since that is a sensible truck driver. Smiles from people that don't know you, even waves or nods, rather than the Detroiter single-digit salute.

Eventually, I always have to come home, though. Through Detroit.
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Old February 18, 2011, 04:34 PM   #71
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Yeah, Stevie-Ray, good point.

Many people may not realize a full size pickup truck weighs in at about 3 to 4

tons. I'm lucky in that mine has 4-wheel disc brakes, many don't.

Unlike new cars which weigh in at under 1800lbs, they can't handle or stop

as quickly as most cars, and the responsible, experienced driver HAS to take the

limits of a vehicle like this into consideration, as well as attempt to

compensate for all those insensitive,selfish, brainless boneheads in smaller

vehicles who insist on driving like mindless cretins on their way to the local

convenience store in a rush because they think they're slick...
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Old February 18, 2011, 04:53 PM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therewolf
Many people may not realize a full size pickup truck weighs in at about 3 to 4tons....Unlike new cars which weigh in at under 1800lbs,
There's virtually not a car in the world that weighs 1,800 pounds... most are at least 2,500, very often over 3,000.... and a fairly large truck, like a Dadge Ram 1500 Laramie, only weighs about 5,500 pounds.

A Lotus Elise, which is one of the lightest cars in America, weighs 2,050 pounds.... a Toyota Prius is over 2,900 pounds.
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Old February 18, 2011, 05:35 PM   #73
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PK...

... only 5,500lbs isn't far short of 3 tons, and that was for a 1500 series.

Now make it a 250/2500 or 350/3500 (depending if you like Ford, or Chevy/Dodge numbering), and the weights probably fall within the "3 or 4 tons" estimate, especially for dually or heavy tow package trucks.

A Mustang isn't about to move my Avalanche out of the way, if they start out in full contact, at a stop. It may have the horsepower, but it won't have the weight to keep the tires in contact.

Again, I don't know if the Mustang was pinned in for the initial confrontation; I'm just saying it is feasible for a large truck to pin in a sports car.
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Old February 18, 2011, 07:07 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by MLeake
Again, I don't know if the Mustang was pinned in for the initial confrontation; I'm just saying it is feasible for a large truck to pin in a sports car.
It is, yes, but the weight difference is likely to be closer 1,500 pounds than the nearly 6,500 suggested. Many cars weigh well over 3,000 pounds and many trucks are under 5,000.

Fact is, all I've seen for a description is "chevy truck". Chevy makes truck that weigh as little as 3,300 pounds (Colorado) and a Ford Mustang can weigh as much as 3,500 pounds.


Regardless, virtually any vehicle could trap a car. If it couldn't go backwards it would be pretty easy for most any other car to stop it from going forwards. It would be two wheels with traction against 4 wheels with brakes on. The most that would happen is the two wheels would spin, I hope a Mustang could spin at least, but some cars couldn't even do that.
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Old February 18, 2011, 07:46 PM   #75
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The guy commited murder.That's all there is to it.
He shot the other driver to kill(in the head) and had no self defense reasoning,other than the moment he had the gun pulled on him.After that he had the opportunity to leave.
He came back and commited vehicular assault and then killed him..He is done for.. prison inmate for life..
My .02 worth
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